By West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat
April 13, 2022
Category: Allergies
Tags: Allergy   Allergy Testing  

Allergens can come from pollen, food, dander from pets, bee stings, dust mites, latex, mold, and more. If you are allergic to one of these and exposed to it, your immune system goes into overdrive by producing specific antibodies. These may not be released in someone else's body when exposed to the same thing. These antibodies release chemicals that cause an allergic reaction. It's good to know what may trigger an allergic reaction so you can better prepare for and manage it. The doctors here at West Coast Ear, Nose, Throat, and Neck Surgery provide allergy testing in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, and Camarillo, CA.

How does allergy testing work?

There are multiple ways to perform an allergy test, the most common being skin testing. However, depending on your case, another kind of test may be ordered.

Skin test

The skin test involves a pinprick with a needle that has a tiny amount of the substance that your doctor or you think that you may be allergic to. Intradermal skin testing is another method. In this type of test, a small amount of the suspected allergens are placed right underneath the skin using a small needle. After either type of skin test, results will be available in about 15 minutes.

Blood test

Sometimes, an individual will not make an appropriate candidate for a skin test. This is usually the case with individuals who are on medications that may affect the results of a skin test. In this case, a blood test may be ordered. Your blood will be tested for how it responds when exposed to potential allergens. A higher number of antibodies and white blood cells may determine that you have an allergy to something.

Other tests

There are other, lesser-used allergy tests. These include a patch test which involves the wearing of a patch on your skin containing a small amount of potential allergen. After 2 days, you will return to the office and your provider will determine your level of allergy to the substance. There is also something called a Challenge test which must be conducted under medical supervision. This test involves swallowing a small amount of food that is a suspected allergen and watching how your body reacts.

How can I better manage reactions to my known allergens?

Some things that you can do to manage allergies in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, Camarillo, CA are:

● Avoid allergens, particularly ones that cause a strong reaction
● Taking a daily antihistamine or other allergy medication
● Allergy shots dampen the response of the immune system when exposed to allergens.
● Carry a medical alert card and epinephrine pen with you for severe reactions.

Contact us

Schedule an appointment for allergy testing at West Coast Ear, Nose, Throat, and Neck Surgery in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, Camarillo, CA by calling one of 4 locations:

● Thousand Oaks - (805) 379-9646
● Simi Valley - (805) 527-7320
● Oxnard -  (805) 983-0395
● Camarillo location - (805) 484-5929

By West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat
April 11, 2022
Category: ENT Treatments
Tags: Thyroid Surgery  

Is a thyroidectomy right for you?

The thyroid might be small but it plays a key role in body temperature regulation, hormones, nervous system function, heart rate and more. So when your thyroid starts to act up you may begin to notice weight gain or weight loss, hair loss, chronic fatigue and other problems. While our Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, Camarillo, CA, ENT doctors can manage most thyroid problems without surgery, sometimes surgery is necessary. Surgery might be necessary if,

You Have an Excessively Large Goiter

A large and painful goiter (an enlargement of the thyroid) that impacts swallowing or breathing may mean turning to our Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, Camarillo, CA for thyroid surgery. Surgery may remove only a part of the thyroid or the whole thing.

You Have an Overactive Thyroid

Hyperthyroidism or overactive thyroid occurs when excessive levels of thyroid hormones are produced by the gland. Most cases of hyperthyroidism can be managed with medications; however, if are unable to take any of these medications and you’ve either tried other therapies and treatment options (or have decided not to undergo certain therapies), then removing the overactive thyroid through surgery might be the best choice.

Nodules on the Thyroid

Unfortunately, not all nodules of the thyroid can be diagnosed as cancerous or noncancerous through biopsy methods. If this is the case, our ENT team may recommend surgery to remove the thyroid, especially if there is a chance that the nodules could be cancerous.

You Have Thyroid Cancer

This is a more obvious reason why you might need to undergo thyroid surgery. If cancer is present we may only need to remove a portion of the thyroid; however, if there is a chance for recurrence, or if cancer has spread outside the thyroid, then our team may recommend removing the entire thyroid gland.

If you think thyroid surgery might be right for you, it’s time to talk with our ENT doctors to find out. West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat is the premier ENT practice, providing thyroid treatment and surgery to individuals in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard and Camarillo, CA. You can schedule your appointment in Thousand Oaks at (805) 379-9646, Simi Valley at (805) 527-7320, Oxnard at (805) 983-0395, and Camarillo at (805) 484-5929.

By West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat
February 10, 2022
Tags: Sinus Surgery  

If you’re suffering from blocked sinuses, let the specialists at West Coast Ear, Nose, and Throat help you determine if sinus surgery in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, or Camarillo, CA is the solution for you.

How Sinus Surgery Can Improve Your Life

Millions of people suffer from sinus issues. It’s often temporary, and many find relief from noninvasive treatments. However, some suffer from chronic sinus issues that aren’t relieved by medication. In these cases, sinus surgery is often the key.

During this surgery, the doctors at West Coast Ear, Nose, and Throat in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, and Camarillo, CA are able to enlarge the nasal passages, and any tissue that is causing or promoting sinus symptoms can be removed. This process provides the following benefits and more.

Improves Drainage

The most obvious benefit of sinus surgery is that it makes it possible for the sinuses to drain as they are intended to do. This allows you to breathe easier.

It's important to understand, though, that surgery is not a replacement for medication. However, it can make any medicine you take more effective.

Reduction in Pain and Pressure

When the sinuses cannot drain naturally, they become blocked and build up. Such a build-up leads to headaches, pressure, and pain in the face. Without addressing it properly, it can last for months at a time. As surgery allows for natural drainage, these painful blockages don’t occur.

Improved Sleep

Sinuses and blockages can make it difficult to fall asleep and stay asleep, leaving sufferers waking up more exhausted than they were when they went to bed. By opening up the passageways and allowing the sinuses to drain, you can achieve a greater quality of sleep.

Less Dry Mouth

People with sinuses have trouble breathing through their noses, so they naturally begin breathing through their mouth, instead. This can cause severe dry mouth and bad breath. Surgery can allow you to breathe freely through your nose again, greatly reducing dry mouth and related issues.

Get Back to Life

As you begin to get more rest and aren’t impacted by your sinuses, you can start to enjoy life again. You’ll have more energy, less pain, and less irritability. You’ll likely notice that you’re more productive and that you get to enjoy your loved ones more.

If you’re tired of suffering from sinus symptoms, make an appointment with West Coast Ear, Nose, and Throat to discuss the benefits of sinus surgery for you. You can schedule your appointment in Thousand Oaks at (805) 379-9646, Simi Valley at (805) 527-7320, Oxnard at (805) 983-0395, and Camarillo at (805) 484-5929.

By West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat
January 06, 2022
Category: ENT Conditions
Tags: ear infections  

If you or your child have an ear infection in Thousand Oaks, CA, West Coast Ear, Nose, and Throat is here to help. Our skilled team of physicians can diagnose and treat ear infections to get you feeling better! Keep reading about ear infections and call us if you or a child is suffering from one.

What is an ear infection?

Ear infections in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, and Camarillo, CA, can be painful and interfere with your life. An infection happens when viruses that are in your nose and throat enter the ear through the eustachian tubes. Your eustachian tubes are small passages that connect the middle ear to the back of the throat. When the ear is infected these tubes are inflamed and it causes pain when you swallow and sneeze.

In children, these tubes are very narrow so ear infections can happen to you at any age but are most common among young children. Young children can't always communicate that their ears are hurting so you may notice them tugging on their ears or being very fussy. We are happy to treat patients of all ages so bring your child in if you notice these signs.

What causes ear infections?

The most common causes of ear infections include:

● Changes in air pressure
● Common cold
● Allergies
● Smoking
● Tonsilitis

Any combination of these things can contribute to an ear infection.

Treating ear infections

Sometimes ear infections can clear up on their own and you won't need to see a doctor. However, if you are in pain from an ear infection, a simple exam can help your doctor confirm an infection and determine the best treatment. You may be prescribed antibiotic drops for your ears or drops made to relieve pain.

West Coast Ear, Nose, and Throat has a dedicated team of doctors to help when you have an ear infection and need an ENT. Contact us for an appointment in Thousand Oaks at (805) 379-9646, in Simi Valley at (805) 527-7320, in Oxnard at (805) 983-0395, and in Camarillo at (805) 484-5929.

By West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat
November 12, 2021
Category: ENT Treatments
Tags: Thyroid Surgery  

At West Coast Ear, Nose, and Throat, our doctors know that thyroid disorders are relatively common, and because of this, we understand the importance of thyroid testing, thyroid medication, and thyroid surgery in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, and Camarillo, CA.

What Are the Signs of Thyroid Issues?

Increased/Decreased Heart Rate

The health of the thyroid can have a direct impact on your cardiovascular health. For example, hyperthyroidism can result in an increased heart rate, while hypothyroidism can result in a slowed heart rate. With hyperthyroidism, your arteries may end up losing elasticity, leading to high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels. With hypothyroidism, you can develop high blood pressure as well, in addition to irregular, faster, harder heartbeats and chest pains.

Fatigue

Fatigue is incredibly common in those who have thyroid disorders. It tends to be the first sign of an issue. You may find that you are sleeping more or finding it hard to wake up in the morning and stay awake. These concerns are serious and may be a sign of an underlying issue, such as a thyroid problem, especially when presented with some of these other symptoms and should be discussed with your doctor.

Weight Gain/Loss

Rapid weight gain and loss is yet another sign that you may have thyroid disease. When you don’t have enough energy to get up and around like usual, you can’t burn the normal number of calories to maintain your normal, healthy weight. On the flip side, when you have an excess amount of energy, your metabolism will work too quickly, resulting in rapid weight loss.

Some other signs of thyroid issues include the following:

● Body shakes
● Difficulty concentrating
● Hair thinning or loss
● Irritability or other mood issues
● Sensitivity to heat/cold
● Muscle aches
● Digestive issues
● Changes in sexual performance
● Changes in the menstrual cycle

How Are Thyroid Problems Treated?

As soon as you have identified the symptoms of a thyroid issue and believe you may have a thyroid problem, you may be curious about how it may be treated. Although other treatment options may be available, there are two primary ways for thyroid issues to be treated: medication and thyroid surgery in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, and Camarillo, CA.

Thyroid Medication

There are numerous prescription medications that can be used to treat both types of thyroid issues. Some are in the form of a capsule or pill, while others come in the form of an injection. Depending on the extent of your disorder, medication may be the route to take.

Thyroid Surgery

In some cases, thyroid surgery is necessary to remove the thyroid. This tends to be the case with hyperthyroidism, as it can be resistant to medication. After the surgery, medication is usually prescribed.

If you believe you are experiencing signs of thyroid issues, call (805) 379-9646, (805) 527-7320, (805) 983-0395, or (805) 484-5929 to schedule thyroid testing at West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat today. Afterward, we can help determine the best course of action, be it thyroid medication or thyroid surgery in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, and Camarillo, CA.





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